Qui tam attorneys are people who represent private plaintiffs, such as a whistleblowers, who are empowered by some law to sue in the name of the government. For example, the False Claims Act allows whistleblowers with original information about fraud committed against the government to sue a company in the government’s name. The government then has a the choice of intervening and taking over the lawsuit filed in its name, or declining to intervene, in which case the whistleblower can litigate the case on his or her own (with the help of their qui tam attorney) in the government’s stead.
The term “qui tam” comes from the Latin phrase:
qui tam pro domino rege, quam pro se ipso in hac parte sequitur,
which means “he who sues on behalf of the state, as well as himself.”
A whistleblower who brings a qui tam lawsuit on behalf of the government is called a “relator.” Qui tam lawsuits have a case caption that denotes that the relator is suing on behalf of the government. For example:
United States ex rel. [the relator] v. [the defendant]
“Ex rel” translates literally to “on the relation/narration of,” so United States ex rel. [the relator] means that the lawsuit is in the name of the United States and is based on information from the relator, who is “relating” or narrating their story to show that the defendant defrauded the government. A qui tam attorney helps the relator assemble their story to make it as convincing as possible. And as a good qui tam lawyer will tell you, sometimes less is more when you’re drafting the complaint. Giving the reader information overload can be a real problem.
Speak to one of our qui tam attorneys:
At no cost and confidentially, you can speak to one of our qui tam lawyers, who can help you evaluate the expected value of your qui tam claim and what whistleblower awards you may be entitled to.
How to find a qui tam attorney near you
Our qui tam attorneys are always happy to talk. We have a national practice and are admitted to practice in courts across the country. We are based in Oakland, California, but take whistleblower cases anywhere in the United States. And we often fly out to meet qui tam relators before we agree to take their case. It helps to really get to know each other.
If we’re not local to you, you can search the Taxpayers Against Fraud (TAF) website for a TAF member near you. TAF is an organization composed of many False Claims Act attorneys from around the country.
Qui tam attorneys fees
Generally, qui tam attorneys take cases on contingency, which means they will advance all their time for free and pay for any costs to develop and file the qui tam relator’s case. In exchange, qui tam attorneys typically ask for a percentage of any whistleblower award. It is typical for a qui tam lawyer to ask for anywhere from 25 percent to 40 percent of the relator’s share of any monetary recovery. Once the relator and qui tam attorney agree to a particular percentage, it should generally be memorialized in writing in a retainer agreement.
Memorialize your qui tam attorneys’ fees in writing
Our Qui Tam Attorneys
Our Qui Tam Lawyers' Experience
Our whistleblower lawyers are experienced in a variety of actions, including cases involving healthcare fraud (typically brought by Medicare and Medicaid fraud whistleblowers or pharmaceutical whistleblowers), defense contractor fraud, as well as securities fraud and tax fraud.
Gibbs Law Group is a California-based law firm committed to protecting the rights of clients nationwide who have been harmed by corporate misconduct. We represent individuals, whistleblowers, employees, and small businesses across the U.S. against the world’s largest corporations. Our award-winning lawyers have achieved landmark recoveries and over a billion dollars for our clients in high-stakes class action and individual cases involving consumer protection, data breach, digital privacy, and federal and California employment lawsuits. Our attorneys have received numerous honors for their work, including “Top Plaintiff Lawyers in California,” “Top Class Action Attorneys Under 40,” “Consumer Protection MVP,” “Best Lawyers in America,” and “Top Cybersecurity/ Privacy Attorneys Under 40.”
Consult a qui tam lawyer:
At no cost, consult a lawyer to find out if you have a strong qui tam lawsuit.
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